The South Carolina Stingrays, proud ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Washington Capitals and AHL’s Hershey Bears, have agreed to terms with forward Nick Saracino for the 2020-21 season.
Saracino, 28, joins South Carolina after serving as the captain of the ECHL’s Wheeling Nailers last season where he scored 23 points in 31 games on eight goals and 15 assists. The Stingrays previously acquired Saracino’s rights from the Nailers as future considerations in a trade which originally sent defender Steve Johnson to Wheeling on Oct. 11, 2019.
The St. Louis, Missouri native has also suited up in 78 AHL games during his career with the Iowa Wild and Binghamton Devils as well as 119 ECHL contests with Wheeling and the Worcester Railers.
“The addition of Nick Saracino to our lineup is really big for us”, said Stingrays Head Coach Ryan Blair. “He is entering his fifth full season of pro hockey and has proven to be a leader and a scoring threat when he touches the ice. He is also a well-rounded player who can play in all situations. We look forward to welcoming him to Charleston and seeing his contributions to our team.”
Saracino, who measures 6-foot, 185-pounds, scored 37 points in just 27 games in his first season with Wheeling during 2018-19 and earned a lengthy call-up to Binghamton where he appeared in 38 games and scored 10 points on six goals and four assists. He was honored as the ECHL Plus Performer of the Month in December of 2018 and was also named ECHL Player of the Week twice.
“South Carolina is a historically winning organization and that was a big factor in my decision,” Saracino said. “I know we’re returning some good veteran players that had leadership roles last year and I’ll help any way I can. I’ve heard great things from the team’s past players and others throughout the league about how good a spot Charleston is and I’m excited to get down there.”
Saracino started his pro career in Iowa with the Wild at the end of the 2015-16 campaign and spent his first full season there during 2016-17, appearing in 33 games.
Before turning pro, Saracino played collegiately at Providence College in the Hockey East for four years from 2012-16. During his junior season in the spring of 2015, he helped the Friars capture an NCAA National Championship while leading the team in scoring with 38 points in 40 games.
Overall, Saracino played in 145 NCAA contests and scored 116 points with 46 goals and 70 assists. He also spent two seasons in the USHL with the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders, suiting up for a combined 99 games during 2010-12.